SENSITIZER is an ESO software toolset written in Matlab and Mathematica aiming at automating some Structural/Thermal/Optical Performance (STOP) sensitivity analyses with Zemax OpticStudio (ZOS). The core code of SENSITIZER runs in MATLAB and drives ZOS in the background through the ZOS-API interface, based on .NET. The output is saved in the MATLAB file format and can be post-processed using MATLAB and/or Mathematica routines. The optical system to analyze is defined in a normal Zemax lens file. The code has been tested with ZOS version 18.4 and MATLAB R2017 on Windows 7 Professional SP1. However, it is expected to run on any operating system.


The copyright of SENSITIZER is owned by the European Southern Observatory (ESO). It is released under the open source GNU Public License version 3 (GPLv3). In a nutshell, this license states that anybody can freely and free of charge download, store, install, run and modify the software. However, any software based in full or part on the source code of SENSITIZER may only be redistributed if it is again under the GPLv3 license with open source. In particular, SENSITIZER may not be integrated into closed-source commercial software.


SENSITIZER does not come with any kind of warranty. While the authors hope that it will facilitate some aspects of STOP analysis, no guarantee is granted whatsoever. In particular, any contractors or institutes that ESO interacts with shall consider this software and the results it generates merely for reference and not as authoritative/applicable.


SENSITIZER is under active development by the Optics and Photonics Department at ESO.

Authors: Ron Holzlöhner (rholzloe[at], Aglaé Kellerer (akellere[at]


SENSITIZER is hosted at SourceForge:

SourceForge project link